Whistleblower Mark Klein will get some well-deserved acknowledgement when he receives a James Madison Freedom of Information Award next month. The award could hardly find a more deserving recipient — Klein is the former AT&T technician who exposed the extent of the government's warrantless wiretapping program.
In early 2006, Klein came forward with internal documents that show the company cooperated with the NSA's secret program to eavesdrop on internet communications, in violation of federal wiretapping laws and the Fourth Amendment. Klein's evidence demonstrates that in at least one of AT&T's facilities, internet traffic was diverted to a secret, secure room to which only the NSA had access.
In the words of EFF Staff Attorney Kurt Opsahl, Klein is "a true American hero." This public recognition of his bravery in defense of the public's right to know is richly deserved.